Senate Bill No. 679: Magna Carta for Scientists, Engineers, Researchers and other S & T Personnel in the Philippines

We find science and technology embedded in every branch of modern life, driving progress and innovation. It is in the best interest of the country and its people to foster our local talent in the field of Science and Technology (S&T) to drive development in the Philippines and improve the lives of millions of Filipinos.

In 2010, only 2.3% of our 31’million workforce were classified under S&T professionals1. In the two-decade assessment of science and technology human resources in our country, a two fold increase in the number of S&T professionals from 1990 to 2010 was coupled with an almost three fold increase in S&T professionals that work overseas2.

In government, the reports2 on the exodus of S&T professionals from agencies like PAGASA, PHILVOLCS, and ASTI has attracted public interest in the past years and motives for their migration were revealed, including uncompetitive local compensation and protracted processing of hazard pay.

In line with these findings, this measure aims to:

1. Remove set limits on additional salary of honoraria for S&T professionals; and
2. Foster ease in accessing benefits for S&T personnel in departments and agencies other than DOST.

It is high time we deliberately retain and empower our Filipino scientists, engineers, researchers, and other science and technology practitioners so we may harness the benefits of S&T to further our national agenda.

Regulations inimical to this interest must be addressed immediately.

In view of the foregoing, the passage of this measure is earnestly sought.


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